Need advice on cleaning spotty looking tile.

Apr 7, 2009
755
5
18
Central PA (814) Area Code
Real Name
Chad Smith & Jennifer Fogleman
Business Location
United States
I cleaned a motorhome for a couple and now they want me to clean their indoor tiled porch. She said it is ceramic tile and that they had "painted a wax" or something on it. Not really sure exactly, I never cleaned any tile yet. It kinda looks like skin peeling and its all spotty. Its hard to explain.
My question is do I have to use a stripper on it or would regular tile/grout alkaline cleaners take it off?
I will probably use my rotovac 360 with the tile/grout head put on and scrub the grout lines with a manual brush then rinse it off and reseal it.
Thanks!
 

C Spot Stop

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Jul 10, 2007
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Phil
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If it is a water based 'wax' then alkie will do. Heat helps and so does dwell. Acid wont do much. UNESS it is real stone. Then you'll get a nice reaction.

'Splain these good folks what ceramic means.

It may not be a water based coating though. Gawd help ya then.

Please ask em why they painted it. Try not to laugh out loud.

"We got tired of how dingy it looked so we coated it like we would any floor."

They higher end RV homes come with some serious stone work.

if so, run do not walk.
 

Matt Strader

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Feb 7, 2009
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Chad I just did a home where the guy sealed his floor with wax and it was completely unnecessary. So the situation is some what similar. I used prochems tile and grout cleaner (alkaline). It worked well but if I had to do it over I would have mixed some stripper in with it. I used a scrub brush
Bi-Level-Deck-Scrub-Brush-Polypropylene-Fibers-10-Plastic-Block-Tapered-Hole_153994.jpg
like this. And it came off pretty easy. The good news is you won't have to re-wax it.

As was stated, a lacquer finish will be a monster to get off, but I HIGHLY doubt that's what they used. First off it would not be peeling off or flaky if they did. So I think you'll be safe with some alky and if you want to make it a bit easier you might even mix some stripper.

Also, I would say something to the effect of "this is a special situation and there for will require some extra work on my part" This way they don't have a problem on pricing and will in turn make you 'The Expert'.

Good luck and if you run into a problem you can call me 561-277-8211.
 

Gary T

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Sep 5, 2008
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I agree with Mark. I know most cc classes teach to start with a mild chem and progress from there. Throw that out the window here and start with a strong stripper. Don't dick around with cleaners trying to get a topical off(unless you know for sure it works). You will be in for a long, frustrating, expensive, day or more.

I love Johnson's Fastrip.
 
Apr 7, 2009
755
5
18
Central PA (814) Area Code
Real Name
Chad Smith & Jennifer Fogleman
Business Location
United States
Another Question on this topic

If I go and apply the stripper do I have to use my rotovac to extract and rinse or can i just use a mop and bucket. Some floor strippers I was looking at in jondons catalog says you can just apply and mop it up, That its free rinsing. Or do I have to apply stripper and extract that up first and the apply cleaner and extact that up too. Also I see places selling tile rinses, Is that necessary? I think she wants it sealed then too.
 

Scott W

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Feb 14, 2006
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An alkaline cleaner plus scrubbing will remove some topical treatments, but often you will require a stripper. I would prefer to test a small area with your alkaline cleaner to see if it works to remove the coating. Then you may have an easier job. But I do understand GAry's point about going right to the stripper, since that is often the route you will need to take.

Allow extra time as compared to standard cleaning process and charge appropriately.
 

farleycarpet

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Jun 22, 2008
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If I go and apply the stripper do I have to use my rotovac to extract and rinse or can i just use a mop and bucket. Some floor strippers I was looking at in jondons catalog says you can just apply and mop it up, That its free rinsing. Or do I have to apply stripper and extract that up first and the apply cleaner and extact that up too. Also I see places selling tile rinses, Is that necessary? I think she wants it sealed then too.

mop and bucket should work fine
 

TechnicRay

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Jan 20, 2009
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Sounds like wax. KISS. Everyone always tries to make it complicated. Apply a stripper, let dwell, extract and see what's left. Nothing left, go with with your alkaline and extract again and go from there.

P.S. If ya run into any probs. you can call me also. Cell. 613-921-1754 (phone's on 24 hrs)

I agree but I would reapply a wax coating.